To mark the occasion, some of the UK’s hottest and most well-known, independent vegan spots are offering discounts to those who take part in the Pledge. They are:
London: The Blacksmith & The Toffee Maker, Islington, London
In January this year, The Blacksmith & Toffee Maker in Islington decided to switch to an all-vegan menu. With vegan ‘mozzarella’ sticks, mac ‘n’ cheese, burgers and some amazing desserts on offer, this traditional-style pub provides non-vegans the chance to try vegan food in a comfortable environment.
As well as serving great food, The Blacksmith and Toffee Maker prides itself on its sustainability, using recyclable and biodegradable products where possible and sending any food waste off to be used to create renewable energy. The pub is dog-friendly, and also has a long-standing relationship with the Islington Food Bank; in January they raised over a ton of donations for the Food Bank and now have a permanent collection point for them.
A tibits spokesperson said:
‘At tibits we pride ourselves on making a positive impact on our earth and supporting the vegan movement. Every Tuesday we have a 100% vegan and 100% delicious offering on our food boat as well as around 80% vegan fare every other day of the week. As pioneers of the vegetarian/vegan movement, we are always finding new creative ways to serve and enjoy plant-based foods.’
tibits has been at the heart of the London veggie/vegan scene since opening its doors; and it is little wonder why with such amazing food on offer!
Young Vegans, Camden Town, London
Unleash your inner cockney with London’s first and only vegan pie and mash shop! Young Vegans serves all the classics, with a vegan twist, including their signature ‘steak’ and ale, as well as their own amazing creations such as the vegan cheeseburger pie and a load of delicious desserts. Young Vegans have just opened their first permanent shop in Camden, but you can also find them at vegan markets and fairs throughout London.
Café Van Gogh, Brixton, London
Located in Brixton, Café Van Gogh has a very simple mission: to serve delicious, 100 percent vegan, affordable food that guests will want to return to week after week. It is safe to say that this mission has been accomplished; you can indulge on a fantastic mix of traditional food that we are all familiar with – including the, what can only adequately be described as, life-changing BBQ seitan ‘ribs’, Caribbean food – such as jerk plantain, as well as some amazing pies and desserts.
Café Van Gogh – who are a non-profit social enterprise – also do some fantastic work in the local community, offering cookery skill classes to local children with additional needs, to aid them in later life. Fantastic food, with fantastic ethics!
Kent: The Monument, Canterbury
Canterbury’s first and only vegan pub! At The Monument, you can gorge on some classic pub-grub, but without the animal cruelty. With dishes such as ‘fish’ and chips, vegan kebabs, hot dogs and some delicious burgers, there is certainly something for everybody. As well as this, their vegan cocktail menu is a hit with vegans and non-vegans alike; vegan White Russian, anybody?
Seaside Cake Parlour, Margate
Not only is the Seaside Cake Parlour Margate’s first vegan cake shop, it was Kent’s very first all-vegan cake shop! It is located on Hawley Street and has an extensive sweet and savoury menu. You can indulge yourself with some amazing homemade creations, such as plant-based ‘Freakshakes’, waffles, cakes, sandwiches, bagels and more, including vegan afternoon tea!
Yorkshire: True Story, York
True Story, located on Lord Mayors Walk, in York is a family-owned and run vegan café which serves homemade, nutritious and delicious plant-based food, using organic ingredients. Customers can expect exciting dishes like chickpea omelettes, salads, soups, falafel and a range of homemade vegan cakes and scones, topped off with some stunning views of York Minster.
Chida Cantina, Leeds
Chida Cantina, located on Cross Belgrave Street, Leeds, is a Mexican-themed taco bar, serving up all the classics, but with a vegan twist. Customers can enjoy tacos stuffed with tofu, marinated soya chunks, homemade vegan ‘chorizo’ and ‘drunken’ beans made with gluten-free beer. You can even try some vegan ‘mutton’ and vegan ‘fish’ – otherwise known as tofish – in your tacos.
Belfast: The Honest Vegan, Belfast
The Honest Vegan, located on Lisburn Road, Belfast, says that its mission is to ‘provide fantastic, cruelty-free and healthy food for vegans, vegetarians and carnivores alike’, and offers many delicious plant-based dishes including Baked Buffalo Cauliflower Bites and Crispy Mushroom Bites, as well as many sandwiches, wraps and salads.
Hertfordshire: Chia Naturally Healthy, Hitchin
Hertfordshire’s first fully vegan café, Hitchin-based Chia Naturally Healthy is a multi-award-winning plant-based café that focuses on healthy and wholesome food. Chia was voted one of the top three plant-based cafés by the Sunday Times, and it is easy to see why. You will no doubt leave satisfied as you gorge on gluten-free waffles, raw cakes and some fantastic salads and healthy burgers!
The Green Kitchen, St. Albans
The Green Kitchen is a cute little café located on Hatfield Road, St. Albans. It prides itself on creating great vegan food for all occasions, whether you fancy breakfast, brunch, lunch, or just want to grab a coffee with a slice of home-made cake, The Green Kitchen is the place for you. It also has some very interesting and delicious themed dinner evenings, including Nepalese and Ethiopian where you can sample some vegan delights from around the world.
Brighton: Happy Maki, Brighton
Happy Maki is Brighton’s first and only 100 percent plant-based sushi eatery. They say that their mission is to make ‘gorgeous, delicious and fresh food, whilst raising awareness of ocean overfishing.’ Customers can grab vegan versions of their favourite sushi rolls – including Hoisin ‘Duck’ Maki and Sweet Chilli ‘Chicken’ Maki.
Says Animal Aid’s Vegan Outreach Campaign Manager, Tod Bradbury:
‘We are so grateful to all of the amazing restaurants for offering participants a special discount.
‘The Summer Vegan Pledge is the perfect opportunity for those who are curious about a plant-based diet to give it a try. And with vegan options popping up in supermarkets, coffee shops, restaurants and cafés – both chain and independent – it has never been easier.
‘A plant-based vegan diet is kinder to animals, better for the environment and healthy.’
To sign up to, or find out more about, the Summer Vegan Pledge, please visit: www.animalaid.org.uk/summerveganpledge